7 die in floods as 20,000 flee their homes
FLOODS ravaged the state of Louisiana, leaving seven people dead and thousands more forced to flee the rising waters following days of catastrophic rainstorms.
More than 20,000 people had to evacuate their homes and as many as 10,000 were living in emergency shelters, officials said on August 15, after rains pummelled much of southern Louisiana, starting on August 11.
Over the weekend, rain accumulations totalled more than 50 centimetres (19.6 inches) in five parts of the New Orleans and Baton Rouge area.
A spokesperson for Louisiana governor John Bel Edwards, Shauna Sanford, said seven people have been killed in the floods. Some 40,000 homes and business were reported without power.
The White House declared four parishes – equivalent to counties in other states – major disaster areas.
“I fully expect that more parishes will be added to the declaration on a rolling basis,” Mr Edwards said in a statement in which he called the flooding “unprecedented”.
Television images showed residential areas covered in several metres of water, with cars and homes partially submerged. –